U.S. Marshalls escort Ruby Bridges to integrate William Frantz Elementary School in New Orleans in 1960.
United States Government

As the city approaches the end of its tricentennial year, professors at the University of New Orleans and the University of Holy Cross are looking back on the city's history of public education. In a new report from The Data Center, they argue New Orleans public schools have failed to realize their original democratic ideals.

Jefferson Parish School Board District 5 candidate Simeon Dickerson is suing incumbent Cedric Floyd over what Dickerson says are "defamatory" statements published in mailers sent to voters.
Committee To Elect Simeon Dickerson

Jefferson Parish School Board District 5 candidate Simeon Dickerson is suing incumbent Cedric Floyd over what Dickerson says are "defamatory" statements published in mailers sent to voters. The mailers say Dickerson has been arrested for a number of crimes, including car theft and battery of a police officer. They also call into question Dickerson's teaching credentials. Dickerson says those statements are "false and misleading."

Lusher Charter School is among the top performing schools in New Orleans, but they're not easy to get into.
Jess Clark / WWNO - New Orleans Public Radio

Enrollment for the 2019-2020 school year opened this week in New Orleans public schools. Parents apply for most schools through the One App, a website where they list their preferred schools. One App uses an algorithm to try to match them with their top choice. Sounds simple, but there are a lot things to consider when making your selections.

Ileana Ortiz helps parents through the enrollment process at the non-profit Ed Navigator. She sat down with WWNO’s Jess Clark to share some do's and don'ts of One App.

Below are some suggestions based on their conversation. 

Is Harney A Bad Apple? Or A Symptom Of Bigger Issues In New Orleans Schools?
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Financial mismanagement, ethics violations, problems serving students with disabilities - these are the reasons the Orleans Parish School Board (OPSB) says it’s going to close Edgar P. Harney Spirit of Excellence Academy at the end of this school year.  The Lens reports Orleans Parish superintendent Henderson Lewis told parents he's "never seen anything like it." But Nahliah Webber is taking issue with the narrative that Harney is such an anomaly. 

Cypress Academy leaders shocked parents when they announced three days before the end of the school year that they won't be reopening in the fall.
Jess Clark / WWNO - New Orleans Public Radio

Orleans Parish school superintendent Henderson Lewis announced plans at Thursday night’s board meeting to take over one troubled charter school, and pass off another. 

The state earned a B overall on the new, tougher school grading system.
midnightpeace_90 / Flickr

Louisiana public schools got an overall B on the Louisiana Department of Education's new, tougher school grading system. Meanwhile, in the New Orleans area, Orleans Parish public schools and Jefferson Parish public schools each earned an overall C. 

[Click here to find your school's letter grade.]

The Curve Is Over

Voters in Jefferson Parish sent more business-backed candidates to their school board in the first round of voting.
Jess Clark / WWNO

Voters in Jefferson Parish have elected members to four school board seats up for consideration. Three other seats will go to a runoff election on Dec. 8. In the four decided races, candidates backed by the business community won out over longtime educators or candidates backed by the teacher's union.

Cade Brumley takes questions before being appointed superintendent.
Jess Clark / WWNO - New Orleans Public Radio

Tuesday is Election Day, and voters in Jefferson Parish will have an opportunity to decide who will represent them on the parish school board. Jefferson Parish has the largest school system in the state, with about 50,000 students. And the nine-member school board has been divided in recent years over the direction of the system.

Southeast Louisiana has a rapidly growing population of immigrant students, many from Central America. When students arrive at local public schools, they need to learn English, in addition to the rest of their curriculum. For our latest installment of WWNO's Voices of Educators series, we hear from Cohen College Prep High School teacher Jasmin Zobrist. Zobrist has a classroom of English language learners (ELLs). All of her students have been in the U.S. for less than a year.

Sixteen-year-old Akelah Sherman (center) and her fellow dancers warm up before rehearsing for their performance.
Jess Clark / WWNO - New Orleans Public Radio

For many, the teenage years are a time when you start to realize the world isn’t fair, and life can be tough. Facing issues like income inequality, racism, and violence, can be overwhelming. One unique program in New Orleans is helping students engage with tough social issues through dance.